You are browsing the archive for Articles.

The Indonesian Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Cluster

December 14, 2011 in Articles

Due to significant contributions of SMEs in mitigating unemployment and alleviating poverty, The Indonesian government are expected to pay more attention to SMEs. The data from the Indonesian Ministry of Cooperative and SME shows that SMEs absorbed 90,491,930 workers in 2007, and it gradually increased at 96,211,332 in 2009. It means that the domestic economies of majority of Indonesian workers(about 97%)are depending on this sector. Therefore, the strategy to enhance the sustainable development of SME remains important.     

In spite of their contributions on Indonesian economy, the interest to the SMEs development could be relied on their geographical agglomeration characteristics, such as locating in dense are, performing inter-firms cooperation, and producing similar products. Since the majority of Indonesian SMEs are located in a dense geographical area, investigating this characteristic is relevant for explaining the Indonesian SME. This phenomenon had been the concerned of Alfred Marshal in the last nineteenth century. Marshal (1920) argued that firms tend to be located in a dense geographical location in order to obtain skilled labour easily and market and technical information intensively. These goals thus could also be achieved by SMEs if they are located in an industrial district. Furthermore, the Marshalian industrial district has inspired the emerging of cluster theory. Two fundamental theories of cluster commonly referred to by scholars recently are cluster and industrial district theories. The former was developed by Porter (1998a) while the latter was proposed by Bianci (1994, in Cainelli, 2008). Fundamentally, these theories are similar (Porter and Ketels, 2009), but the industrial district provides more attention on the SMEs as a majority members of cluster and explicitly recognizes the importance of social capital in cluster development (Becattini, 2004; Cainelli, 2008; Parrilli, 2009). Therefore, the industrial district theory will be used to investigate the development path of Indonesian SME cluster.            


The industrial district theory defined cluster as a socio-geographical entity of small and medium enterprises(SMEs)producing a specific commodity in industrial atmosphere (Becattini, 2004; Cainelli, 2008; Parrilli, 2009). The socio-geographical entity is characterized by the existence of interpersonal relationship among actors, and the common social and cultural background owned by SMEs . This definition of cluster highlights the social and geographical bonds among cluster members. Thus inter-connections among cluster firms rely upon the common social and culture values and the geographical boundary differing cluster and non cluster members. Moreover, the industrial district also recognizes the inter-related business activities in generating commodity within cluster. In conjunction with the definition of cluster, the Indonesian Ministry of cooperative and SME identified cluster as a centre of business operations of SMEs in certain region where inter-related activities in using resources and producing commodity are performed (The Indonesian Ministry of Cooperative and Small and Medium Enterprises, 2002). Weijland (1999) further added that cluster commonly consists of twenty SMEs or less for cluster with export orientation. Finally, it can be highlighted that cluster is a group of SMEs in a similar values chain of product which is bounded by common social and value ties and geographical border.  

 Based on those definitions of cluster, Perry (2005b) asserted that Indonesia provides interesting cases of cluster, in particularly case of SME cluster. The  cases of Indonesian SME cluster are significant since study under taken by ter Wengel(2002)recognized about 25,000 SME clusters located across the regions in Indonesia with varied types and developmental stages (Perry, 2005a). However, only limited SME clusters have been investigated, such as a furniture cluster in Jepara, East Java (Alexander and Alexander, 2000; Andadari, 2008), a furniture cluster in Bukir-Pasuruan and leather cluster in Tanggulangin, Sidoarjo (Marijan, 2005a), a metal casting cluster in Ceper, Central Java (Sato, 2000), and a roof tile cluster in Karanggeneng, Central Java (Sandee and Rietveld, 2001). Therefore, some fundamental questions related to the existence of SME cluster in Indonesia arise: Do the Indonesian SME clusters represent the cluster defined in Industrial district theory?: What are the specific features of Indonesian SME cluster?.

 To answer these questions, the comprehensive model proposed by Parrilli (2009) is used in this study. The similar characteristics owned by the Indonesian SME cluster and the furniture cluster in Forly, Italy (a cluster under studied by Parrili(2009)), such as the domination role of SME, the existence of inducement policy, and the local value tie within cluster, justifies the use of Parrilli’s model in explaining whether Indonesian SME clusters do or do not correspond to the cluster concept in the industrial district theory. Additionally, the model is also employed to describe the common characteristics of Indonesian SME cluster.

 The driver factors of cluster development

Parrilli (2004; 2007; 2009) comprehensively described the developmental stages and the challenges faced by Forly, Italy cluster. He recognized three driver factors influencing the development of Forly, Italy cluster: collective efficiency, policy inducement, and social capital. In order to explain the  concept of collective efficiency, Parrilli adopted the frame-work proposed by Schmitz (1995)[1]. The framework acknowledges two types of collective efficiency advantages driving the SMEs to be located in a dense geographical location, they are local externality and joint action. If the local externality can be obtained by SMEs passively within cluster, the benefits of joint action can be achieved by cluster through deliberative actions, in the forms of vertical, horizontal, bilateral or multilateral partnership.

 The second factor affecting the development of cluster is inducement policy. Parrilli (2007) argued that policy inducement and collective efficiency should be viewed together in developing cluster because collective efficiency represents the endogenous factor which is influenced by the specifics feature of cluster and while policy inducement represents macro framework which foster the development of cluster. Moreover, the government policy may contribute to the development of cluster in two ways; stimulating the emerging of SME cluster and managing the internal dynamics of cluster. In the initial stage, government and private sector may induce collectively the emerging of cluster in a certain region. Next, the government can takes a part in managing the internal dynamic of cluster (Parrilli and Sacchetti, 2008). Facilitating infrastructure and stimulating SME to participate in value chain process of large firms are common forms of cluster inducement program designed by government. Boosting transfer technology from leading firms to SMEs within cluster and regulating fair competition among cluster firms is general government regulation managing the dynamic of cluster. Furthermore, Tambunan (2005) classified cluster policies into direct and indirect cluster policies. The former refers to the government initiative that places SME cluster as a policy target, such as providing financial support, performing training and technical supervision, providing machinery and conducting trade fair. On the other hand, the latter represents the macro policy of government influencing the development of cluster. This type of cluster policy could be explained by a cluster model proposed by Porter (1998b). In his model, Porter (1998b) argued that development of cluster could be shaped by supporting firm strategy, structure, and rivalry, demand and conditions factors, and supporting industry.  

 the third factor driving the development of cluster is social capital. The social capital is common value and norms influencing social interaction among individual (Putnam, 2000; Bowles and Gintis, 2002). Molina-Morales and Martinez-Fernández (2010) asserted that social capital encompasses social interaction, trust and shared vision dimensions. In conjunction with these dimensions of social capital, Parrilli (2009) identified trust as a form of social cohesiveness within cluster while entrepreneurship spirit as self realization. However, most of these dimensions of social capital are intangible, and thus the existence of social capital within cluster is hard to identify. Study conducted by Miguel et al (2003; 2005) are likely helpful for indentifying the existence of social capital within Indonesian community due to the real parameter used, such as the existence of community group, informal social capital, and family impact which are easily measured. Thus, the development of cluster is also influenced by the existence of social capital that bounds the cluster member in the common social and culture values. 


Traditional agglomeration of Indonesian SME cluster

It was explained in previous paragraphs that collective efficiency can be obtained in the forms of economy externality and joint action. These two types of collective efficiency will be used to investigate whether the Indonesian SME clusters do or do not provide the collective efficiency for their member. 

 Since most of the Indonesian SME clusters root to the local economy and culture, they tend to spontaneously growth without government intervention (Weijland, 1999; Marijan, 2005b). This condition eventually impacts on the motives of SME manager in operating business within cluster. Most of them operate business due to continuing family business or following the success other entrepreneurs. In other words the entry barriers for locating in cluster are not constraints for their business. Hence this condition imposes the importance of further explanation why SME tends to locate in a dense geographical location.    

  SMEs may gain the external economy by locating in cluster. Due to sufficient infrastructures, such as road, and communication network, SME cluster will be able to provide external economy for their members by reducing transportation cost and attracting potential buyer. While the most of Indonesian SME clusters are located in remote area, some are located in an urban area with sufficient supporting infrastructure (Weijland, 1999). Studies undertaken by Sandee and Rietveld (2001) and Andadari (2008) revealed the impact of the availability of  public facilities provided by government on the performance of SME cluster. It was found that SME cluster gained external economy in the form of increasing market access due to public facilities within the cluster. Furthermore, The Indonesian government also promoted the development of cluster by conducting trade fair and boosting the upgrading technology among SMEs (Sandee and Rietveld, 2001).    

 Another type of collective efficiency is joint action. This type of collective efficiency should be obtained by clustered firms through deliberative action, such as vertical, horizontal, bilateral or multilateral partnership. Joint action may encompass producers, suppliers, distributors, and supporting institutions. Essentially, joint action within cluster will lead cluster become a complex production system which perform a value chain process to generate a certain commodity. Regarding the existence of joint action within Indonesian SME cluster, Marijan (2005b) asserted that the majority of Indonesian SME cluster merely consume the passive advantages of collective efficiency (external economy)and less perform deliberative action to obtain more benefits from cluster. Sandee et al (2002) and Tambunan (2005) echoed this argument by categorizing most of SME clusters into dormant  or artisanal cluster. This type of cluster refers to the cluster with low level of joint action and productivity and merely serves local market. However, Sandee et al (2002) and Andadari(2008) argued that there are several dynamic Indonesian SME clusters which both successfully export their product and actively participate in global value chain. Therefore, it could be concluded that the Indonesian SME cluster could not be generalized due to varied characteristics and developmental stages.

 Regarding joint actions within Indonesian SME clusters, Kuncoro (2000) indentified the common types of joint action involving cluster members, they are  Perkebunan Inti Rakyat (PIR)  or nucleolus agricultural enterprise, trade partnership, vendor linkages, and sub-contracting. PIR is commonly applied in agriculture sectors to support transfer knowledge from large agricultural enterprises to small farmers, while the trade partnership leads a large enterprise to play as a distributor agent of cluster SME in distributing commodity to the market outside the cluster. The third type of cluster is vendor linkage. Private or state owned enterprises often design vendor linkage as a form of their corporate social responsibility. In this program clustered SMEs gain marketing or technology assistance by large enterprises with different core business, which aims to strengthen the performance cluster SMEs. Next, sub-contracting puts SME in cluster as a sub-contractor that provides certain component of the final product generated by large enterprise. Likely, this type  of joint action is the most appropriates form to stimulate cluster providing more benefits for SME and to exploit local value for export commodity   (Berry and Levy (1999) cited in Berry et al., 2002) asserted that sub-contracting may exploit local value for export commodity.  Finally, this type of joint action is commonly founded in major Indonesian SME cluster, such as furniture, rattan, garment (Berry et al., 2002) and metal casting cluster(Sato, 2000; Hayasi, 2002)

 Inducement policy of cluster development

The cluster development in Indonesia has been discussed in the national level during the last decade. The deputy of SME resources development in The Ministry of Cooperative and SME, I Wayan Dipta asserted that an SME may operate efficiently and access financial resources from bank and non bank organization easily by locating it self within cluster. The efficiency operations and strong financial support lead to the competitiveness of SME( Monday 8 November 2010). In conjunction with the previous statement, The vice leader of The East Java chamber of commerce, Muhammad Rizal, acknowledged the strategic value of cluster to leverage the market capacity of SME, he further argued that financial support from Corporate Social Responsibility program of state owned enterprises may enforce the production capacity of SME (Citra, 2010). The economics observer, Irawan (2010 )added that cluster is able to create multiple effects in the long term by stimulating the emerging of new business formations. However, both of them regret the absence of clear implementation of cluster policy.

Regarding this issue, Sutrisno (2009) asserted that the initiatives of Indonesian to develop SME cluster originated from the establishment of SMECDA (Small Medium Enterprises and Cooperative Development)[2]. This forum has three fundamental functions in developing SME cluster, to develop business operation, provide financial support and stimulate investment, and provide consultation. SMECDA also significantly contribute to the institutional and policy transition from The Directorate General of Small Scale Industry under Department of Industrial to The Directorate General of SME Development under The Ministry of Cooperative and SME.

 This transition process thus leads to the emerging of programs for SME cluster development in Indonesia. Sutrisno (2009)identified the two most success programs: Business Development Service (BDS)and Modal Awal Pendanaan (MAP) or the initial capital programs within SME cluster. While BDS facilitates managerial and technical supervision, MAP provides financial support mainly from micro financial institutions.  The Indonesian Statistics survey revealed the significant contribution of these programs to the increasing sales among 25% cluster SMEs participating in the program, and the stimulation of  SMEs survival during the economy crisis (Sutrisno, 2009). These finding echoed by Rosyadi’s (2005) study on the association between services provided by BDS and the performance of cluster SMEs in East Java region.

 Social capital

The next factor influencing the development of SME cluster is the existence of social capital. Studies undertaken by Miguel et al (2003; 2005) are likely relevant for describing the social capital within Indonesian community. Both of these studies offered three dimensions of social capital, they are community group, informal social capital, and the family impact[3]. Moreover, Miguel et al (2005) asserted that social capital does not affect the industrialization in Indonesia. They argued that due to great effects provided by cost, local economy and institution, and political factors to the industrialization, the social capital effect apparently does not emerge significantly. Reversely, in their previous study investigating the effect of industrialization on social capital, it was found that the increasing of industrialization accords with the increasing of social capital (Miguel et al., 2003). Even though Miguel et al’s (2003; 2005) studies clearly described the existence of social capital within Indonesian society, their dimensions of social capital seemly did not represent the social capital within SME cluster. 

 The community group and informal social capital dimensions are relevant for investigating the role of social capital in the development of cluster. If community group could be explained by the existence of koperasi or cooperative, informal organization, or arisan (Miguel et al., 2003), represent the informal social capital which could be referred into social network that proposed by Molina-Morales and Martinez-Fernández (2010). While community group, particularly the cooperative usually plays a significant role in collective purchasing material and providing credit for cluster SME, informal social capital (informal network) contributes in transactional cost reduction among cluster members (Weijland, 1999). Furthermore, Weijland (1999) explained that cluster actors often use informal network for absorbing workers and stimulating new business establishments within cluster. Sandee and Rietveld  (2001) added that informal networking among cluster members also contribute to the technological upgrading process in SME cluster. Finally, Alexander and Alexander (2000) indicated that informal social ties remain to be used by cluster SME in the production process. It could be highlighted that the social capital in the forms of community group or social network contribute individual for the firm and contribute collectively for inter-firm cooperation.      

 In spite of the community group and informal social capital, the existence of social capital could be identified by from the emerging of shared vision among cluster members (Molina-Morales and Martinez-Fernández, 2010). Moreover, Marijan (2005b) asserted that the Indonesian cultural values, such as gotong royong or social joint action is  potential as foundation for building shared vision within cluster. However, shared vision is often eroded by opportunistic behaviour performed by cluster SME. Sato (2000) indicated, in some cases, the tendency of successful SMEs enhance their competitiveness individually rather than share potential market information or perform joint action with neighbouring firms because the manager/owner of successful SME assumed that producing various types of product would generate more profit. Kuncoro (2000) and Widyaningrum (2003) asserted, furthermore, that opportunistic behaviours common occur in sub-contracting relations between large firms and cluster SMEs. The large firms that ideally function as a source of knowledge and innovation merely exploit the cluster SME by purchasing output of cluster in low price. Consequently, in terms of the shared vision, specialization of production is hardly founded in Indonesian and the exploitation of production capacity of SME cluster often occurs in sub contracting relations.

 Two cases from SME cluster of East Java.

In order to provide depth analysis and specific findings, the study focuses on two cases from SME clusters of Eas Java-Indonesia: furniture cluster of Bukir- Pasuruan and footwear cluster of Wedoro-Sidoarjo. 

Furniture cluster at Bukir Pasuruan

Bukir is a village located in Pasuruan, East Java that is recognized as the biggest furniture cluster in East Java because of the common profession among the villagers as a carpenter or craftsman. Initially, they learned how to make and craft furniture from craftsmen in Jepara (the Indonesian largest furniture cluster). Afterward, the crafting skill was spread across the villagers. In addition to the increasing number of craftsmen and the inclining of furniture demand entails the development of the cluster. Hence, in 1973 the local district government of Pasuruan relocated the business centre of Bukir-Pasuruan to a more representative location (Anonymous, 2007). Table 1 exhibits the potency of wooden furniture industry in Pasuruan and shows that all the indicators of the wooden furniture industry tend to increase. The number of establishment of wooden furniture production grew from 2,295 to 2,314 units during 2006-2007. Consequently, the number of employment involved in this industry also increased from 20,516 to 20,644 workforces. The increasing trend also occurred in the value of investment and of production of wooden furniture industry. 


Table 1

The potency of wooden furniture industry in Pasuruan





Number of establishment






Value of investment (IDR.000)



Value of production (IDR. 000)



(Badan Penanaman Modal dan Pelayanan Terpadu Pasuruan, 2008)


Table 2      The export contribution of wooden furniture industry in Pasuruan 2006-2007




Volume of export

3.594.402 kg

4.549.652 kg

Value of export

5.290.048 US $

6.287.040 US $

(Badan Penanaman Modal dan Pelayanan Terpadu Pasuruan, 2008)

 Furthermore, the majority of Bukir furniture cluster members are small and medium enterprises (SMEs) which are commonly in the form of family business and employs workers under family or neighbouring ties.  However, some export-oriented firms are also located in the cluster. Export-oriented firms usually originate from SMEs which have successfully expanded their market from domestic to foreign. Beside marketing their product overseas, due to high demand of the furniture commodity within Bukir cluster, some export-oriented enterprises implement dual operations in producing the furniture: direct production and product outsourcing. The former refers to the mechanism in which firms produce the furniture in theirs own workshop, whereas the latter applies to the mechanism in which firms order unfinished (unpolished) furniture to the SMEs and improve it into the finished product.  In outsourcing product, moreover, the firms remain controlling the quality for ensuring that product will be accepted by foreign buyers. The combination of these systems likely contributes to the production capacity of large firms to serve both domestic and foreign markets. Even though SMEs and export-oriented enterprises have different capacity, both of them use the middle technology which combines traditional techniques and modern machinery in producing furniture. Hence, the categorization of Bukir cluster members into SMEs and large enterprises does not rely on the technology adoption but merely on their market orientation and financial capital.

In regards with market orientation, the members of Bukir cluster perform different strategies to obtain potential buyers. Due to the popularity of Bukir furniture cluster across the cities in East Java, the cluster members are less motivated to seek potential domestic buyers because the domestic buyers will usually visit and buy furniture directly in the cluster. However, some (particularly large enterprises) are quite proactive in looking for potential foreign buyers, for instance by participating in international furniture fairs or designing a website.  The export contribution of the wooden furniture is shown in table 2. The data depicts that the volume and value exports were inclining during 2006-2007. If the volume of exported furniture increased from 3.594.402 to 4.549.652 Kgs, the export value of this commodity rose from  5.290.048 to 6.287.040 US$.

Regardless of those potencies, the Bukir furniture cluster is facing several constraints for development. The scarcity of raw materials, insufficient infrastructure, limited financial capital, and inadequate production facilities are common obstacles among the Bukir cluster members (Badan Penanaman Modal dan Pelayanan Terpadu Pasuruan, 2008). Since furniture producers hardly find teak wood, they use lower quality of wood, for instance mahogany for the raw material of the furniture, which results in the reduction of the product value. The next constrain is poor public facilities, particularly the access to the cluster location. Even though the central business of Bukir cluster is located close to the main road of East Java, other parts of Bukir cluster located in a remote area remain isolated from market access. And the rest of the obstacles posed by Bukir cluster members are likely inter-related. Due to the limited financial capability, cluster firms are unable to employ production facilities with advanced technology.

 The foot wear cluster of Wedoro, Sidoarjo.

Since footwear industry has been acknowledged by Indonesian chamber of commerce as an industry that support the Indonesian export value, this industrial sector has more attention from the Indonesian government. There are several policies were implemented by Indonesian government to support this industry, such as The Instruction of President (Instruksi Presiden) in encouraging to use Indonesian product, The regulation from Indonesian Ministry of Trade No. 45/2008 about import mechanism of certain commodities, including footwear commodity, The regulation from Indonesian Ministry of Industry No 94/M-IND/PER11/2008 about machinery restructuration  program for SME in textile and footwear industries, and tax incentive and financial credit. The Indonesian minister of Industrial, M.S Hidayat, furthermore, asserted that cluster strategy may enhance the competitiveness of footwear cluster, particularly in East Java by pushing the supply and pulling the demand of this industrial sector (Noveiy, 2010). Cluster strategy can provide the efficient supply chain of the footwear industry by stimulating the industries which are supplying the raw material the footwear industry, such as a sole producer and a leather manufacturer, to locate closely to the footwear industry. Moreover, cluster strategy can increase the demand of this industry by fostering the sub contract mechanism between large manufacturer and SME that are operating in footwear industry. It could be seen that the Indonesian government pay more attention to the footwear industry due to the significant contribution of this industry in Indonesian export value.

Wedoro is the one of the Indonesian footwear cluster that is located in Waru district, Sidoarjo, East Java Province. In fact, 9 of 17 villages that are located in Waru district of Sidoarjo are industrial districts of footwear, but the largest of footwear cluster in this area is Wedoro (Surabaya Tourism website). Furthermore, the development trajectories of this cluster could be classified onto four phases:

  1. Phase 1950’s: The emerging of Wedoro footwear cluster was initiated by ten entrepreneurs who generated shoe and sandal in this area.  These products are solely provided for local market. 
  2. Phase 1960’s: Due to better condition of local economy which is featured by the emerging of several new shopping centres around the cluster, SMEs that operated within Wedoro footwear cluster started to expand their market to the broader area, such as Surabaya (the capital city East Java province).
  3. Phase 1990’s: There was extensive growth in this stage, because several SMEs successfully exported their product to the foreign market, such as India, Africa, and Saudi Arabia. Moreover, the number of SMEs that are operating in this cluster was dramatically increased into about 800 SMEs.
  4. Phase 2000’s: this stage is the decline stage of this SME cluster, as the number of entrepreneur decreased onto 250 SMEs. Even tough, the cooperative organization was set up by several entrepreneurs for supporting supply of raw material and enhancing sales of the product, it is likely enable to stimulate the re-emerging of this cluster (Anonymous, 2010).

The development phases of Wedo cluster shows that likely this cluster is in the decline stages.

 There are several development constraints faced by entrepreneurs in Wedoro cluster, the two main obstacles that may erode the performance of this cluster are low access to raw material and the invasion of China’s product (Anonymous, 2010). Since small scale manufactures of footwear unable to independently generate sole (a component of shoes), they source this component from large supplier. Due to absence of strong supplier-small producer within this cluster, the large manufactures of footwear often dominate supply chain of the material. This condition leads the scarcity of material particularly at the peak season when the demand of shoes is increasing. Consequently, SMEs are unable to provide shoe although the demand of this product increases. Moreover, the implementation of China-ASEAN Free Trade Area (CAFTA) which allows China’s shoes enter Indonesian domestic market, likely lead SMEs in Wedoro footwear cluster in the worse condition. Due to efficient production system, the price of china’s shoes is relative cheap compare to the Indonesian made. As a consequently, China’s shoes dominate the Indonesian domestic market which are commonly sensitive in price.  Finally, several pragmatic entrepreneurs prefer to change their profession from shoe makers to shoe (including China’s shoes) traders.         



Alexander, J. & Alexander, P. 2000 From kinship to contact? Production chains in the Javanese woodworking industries, Human Organization,vol.59,no.1pp. 106-116.

Andadari, R. K. 2008, Local cluster in global value chain, Case study of wood furniture industry in Central Java (Indonesia), Doctor Thesis, Faculty of Economic Spatial, Vrije Universiteit

Anonymous, 2007,  Dari Pasuruan ke Seluruh Pelosok Jawa Timur, accessed 20/12/200010, Web Page

Anonymous, 2010,  Menanti Sol Kembali ke Wedoro, accessed 12/12/2010, Web Page

Badan Penanaman Modal dan Pelayanan Terpadu Pasuruan, 2008,  Peluang Investasi, accessed 20/12/2010, Web Page

Becattini, G. 2004 Industrial Districs, Cheltenham, Gloss, UK, Edward Elgar Publishing Limited.

Berry, A., Rodrigues, E. & Sandee, H. 2002 Firm and group dynamics in the small and medium enterprise sector in Indonesia, Small Business Economics,vol.18 pp. 141-161.

Bowles, S. & Gintis, H. 2002 Social capital and community governance Economic Journal,vol.112,no.Novemberpp. 419-436.

Cainelli, G. 2008 Industrial district: theoretical and empirical insight. IN Karlsson, C. (Ed.) Handbook of research on cluster theory Cheltenham, Glos, UK Edward Elgar Publishing Limited.

Citra, A., 2010,  Kadin Dorong Pemberlakuan Strategi Kluster UMKM accessed 20/12/2010, Web Page

Hayasi, M. 2002 The role of subcontracting in SME development in Indonesia: Micor-level evidence from the metalworking and machinery industry, Journal of Asian Economics,vol.13 pp. 1-26.

Irawan, M. E., 2010 Strategi “cluster” untuk UMKM Jatim, Kompas on line, 15 September, accessed 20/12/2010,

Kuncoro, M., 2000, Usaha Kecil di Indonesia : Profil, Masalah dan Strategi Pemberdayaan paper presented to Seminar Strategi Pemberdayaan Usaha Kecil di Indonesiadi STIE Kerja Sama, Yogyakarta, Indonesia 18 Nopember 2000

Marijan, K. 2005a, Decentralization and cluster policy in Indonesia: case studies from Tanggulangin and Bukir, PhD Thesis, Australian National University

Marijan, K. 2005b Mengembangkan industri kecil menengah melalui pendekatan kluster, INSAN,vol.7,no.3pp. 216-224.

Marshal, A. 1920 Principles of Economics, London, Macmillan.

Miguel, E., Gertler, P. & Levine, D. I.,2003, Did industralization destroy social capital in Indonesia?,Working paper No.C03-131, Accessed  on 2/12/2010, from

Miguel, E., Gertler, P. & Levine, D. I. 2005 Does social capital promote industrialization? Evidence from a rapid industrializer, The Review of Economics and Statistics,vol.87,no.4pp. 754-762.

Molina-Morales, F. X. & Martinez-Fernández, M. T. 2010 Social network:s, effects of social capital on firm innovation, Journal of Small Business Management vol.48,no.2pp. 258-279.

Noveiy, A., 2010, Jombang jadi klaster industri sepatu, Suara Karya on line, 30 Agustus, accessed 20/7/2010,

Parrilli, M. D. 2004 A stage and electic approach to industrial district development: Two policy keys for”survival” clusters in developing countries, European Planning Studies vol.12,no.8pp. 1115-1131.

Parrilli, M. D. 2007 SME cluster development, A dynamic view of survival cluster in developing countries, New York, Palgrave Macmillan.

Parrilli, M. D. 2009 Collective efficiency, policy inducement and social embeddedness: Drivers for the development of industrial district, Entrepreneurship & Regional Development,vol.21,no.1pp. 1-24.

Parrilli, M. D. & Sacchetti, S. 2008 Linking learning with governance in networks and clusters: key issues for analysis and policy Entepreneurship & Regional Development,vol.20,no.Julypp. 37-408.

Perry, M. 2005a Business Clusters, An International perspective, New York, Routledge.

Perry, M. 2005b Business clusters in the South: a critical appraisal from Indonesia evidence Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography,vol.26,no.2pp. 227-243.

Porter, M. 1998a Cluster and the new economics of competition, Harvard Business Review,vol.7,no.6pp. 6-15.

Porter, M. 1998b On Competition, Boston, Harvard Business School Publishing.

Porter, M. & Ketels, C. 2009 Clusters and Industrial districts: Common roots, different perspectives. IN Becattini, G., Bellandi, M. & De-Propris, L. (Eds.) A Handbook of Industrial Districts. Massachusetts, Edward Elgar Publishing limited.

Putnam, R. 2000 Bowling alone, New York, Simon and Schuster.

Rosyadi, I. 2005, Pengaruh program Business Development Service (BDS) terhadap kinerja pengelola usaha kecil menengah (UKM) di Jawa Timur, Thesis Master Program Pascasarjana, Universitas Airlangga

Sandee, H., Isdijoso, B. & Sulandari, S.,2002, SME Clusters in Indonesia: An analysis of growth dynamics and employment conditions,Report to the International Labour Organization October 2002, Accessed  on from

Sandee, H. & Rietveld, P. 2001 Upgrading traditional technologies in small-scale industry cluster: Collaboration and innovation adoption in Indonesia, The Journal of Development Studies,vol.37 pp. 150-172.

Sato, Y. 2000 Linkage formation by small firms: The  case of a rural cluster in Indonesia, Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies,vol.36,no.1pp. 137-166.

Schmitz 1995 Collective efficiency: Growth path for small scale industry Journal of Development Studies,vol.31,no.4pp. 529-566.

Surabaya Tourism website,  accessed 20/12/2009, Web Page

Sutrisno, N., 2009, Pengembangan kluster IKM/UKM di Indonesia, pengalaman dan prospeknya, paper presented to Seminar-Workshop Pengembangan kluster UMKM Surakarta-Indonesia, 26-28 Oktober 2009

Tambunan, T. 2005 Promoting small and medium enterprises with a clustering approach: A policy experience from Indonesia, Journal of  Small Business Management,vol.43,no.2pp. 138-154.

The Indonesian Ministry of Cooperative and Small and Medium Enterprises, 2002, The Guidance for Stimulating and Developing  SME cluster,  Accessed on from

Weijland, H. 1999 Microenterprise clusters in rural Indonesia: Industrial seedbed and policy target, World Development,vol.27,no.9pp. 1515-1530.

Widyaningrum, N. 2003 Eksploitasi terhadap pengusaha kecil melaui rantai hulu-hilir, Jurnal Analsisi Sosial,vol.8,no.1.


[1] The collective efficiency framework was employed in several studies to investigate the development of cluster in developing countries. The most influential study using this framework is the project was funded by World Bank. The results of this project were published in several journals ( Schimtz, 1999, Schimtz  and Musyck, 1999, and Nadvi , 1999a, 1999b)

 [2] SMECDA intensively coordinate the development of SME cluster through online communication at

[3] The measurement of these dimensions employed the indicators from Indonesian Statistics (Miguel et al, 2003; 2005)

Mencetak Kader Wirausaha, Mungkinkah?

December 14, 2011 in Articles

Mukhammad Kholid Mawardi [1]


Thesis yang dikemukan Samuel P. Huntington tentang perang peradaban (clash of civilization) nampakya menjadi kenyataan. Pasca runtuhnya negara Uni Sovyet sebagai simbol kekuatan komunisme global, perdaban barat nampaknya berhadapan vis a vis  dengan kekuatan Islam dalam persaingan peradaban global. Ketidakadilan global yang disebabkan standard ganda kekuatan barat, menyulut suburnya gerakan radikal di beberapa negara yang dihuni mayotritas umat Islam. Sehingga muncul stereotype Islam sebagai agama yang mengajarkan kekerasan terhadap umat non –islam. Skenarion global untuk memojokkan peradaban islam diperkuat dengan kondisi internal umat islam yang syarat dengan ketidakberdayaan ekonomi, yang diyakini sebagai salah satu  penyulut gerakan radikal umat islam (Hussain, 2006).Terlepas dari adanya sebagaian pihak yang tidak sependapat dengan pendapat tersebut, namun penulis meyakini bahwa meski tidak sepenuhnya berpengaruh, faktor kemiskinan umat islam khususnys di Indonesia nampaknya berkontribusi terhadap radikalisme gerakan umat islam.

Berdasarkan Indeks pembangunan manusia (Human Development Index) 2011, The United Nation Development Program menempatkan Indonesia pada tingkat 124 dari 187 negara yang disurvey (The Jakarta Pos, 11/02/2011). Fakta ini menunjukan bahwa Indonesia sebagai populasi muslim terbesar di dunia, memiliki tingkat harapan hidup, pendidikan, kemampuan baca tulis (literacy), dan standar hidup berada jauh dibawah negara-negara lain, atau dengan kata lain Indonesia belum bisa dikatan sebagai negara kaya (baca tidak mampu). Fakta ini di dukung data yang dikeluarkan Badan Pusat Statistik  yang mengungkapkan bahwa pada tahun 2010 tingkat kemiskinan di Indonesia sebesar 13,33% atau terdapat 31.02 juta penduduk dengan pendapatan dibawah  Rp 211.726,- per kapita per bulan. 

Dari data tersebut diatas, muncul pertanyaan apakah yang bisa kita lakukan? Kalau kita selama ini mengkalim diri sebagai kader umat, sudah sejauh mana aksi yang kita lakukan untuk mencari solusi permasalah diatas. Himpunan Mahasiswa Islam (HMI) sebagai bagaian dari umat berkewajiban untuk berperan dalam deradikalisasi  gerakan umat islam. Salah satu agenda besar yang sudah seharusnya dilakukan HMI  adalah dengan terlibat secara aktif dalam program-program pengentasan kemiskinan. Perdebatan wacana keislaman dan wacana demokratisasi yang selama ini menjadi “makanan”sehari-hari kader  nampaknya belum banyak membeikan kontribusi riil bagi umat. Kemiskinan merupakan permasalah umat yang berada didepan mata yang harus dicarikan solusinya.  Program pengentasan kemiskinan dapat diwujudkan salah satunya dengan mendorong tumbuh berkembangnya jiwa kewirausahaan dikalangan mahasiswa dan mendiksukan isu tersebut sangat relevan dengan eksistensi HMI sebagai organisasi yang memiliki sistem pengkaderan yang mapan. Dalam tulisan ini, penulis ingin mendiksukan isu tentang peluang dan hambatan mewujudkan kader-kader wirausaha dalam sistem pengkaderan HMI sebagai jawaban terhadap permasalah umat kekinian.  

 Peran Perguruan Tinggi dalam Penciptaan Wirausahawan

HMI sebagai organisasi mahasiswa, memiliki nafas pergerakan yang tidak terlepas dari aktivitas di dalam kampus. Sehingga mendiskukan peran perguran tinggi akan relevan dengan aksi-aksi yang dilakukan HMI, termasuk didalamnya ketika mendiskusikan peran perguruan tinggi dalam penciptaan wirausaha. Perguruan tinggi dianggap merupkan bagain dari instrumen kebijakan yang mampu mendorong pertumbuhan ekonomi dan penciptaan lapangan pekerjaan melaui peningkatan jiwa kewirausahaan dikalangan mahasiswa (Davey et al., 2011). Peguruan tinggi merupakan wahana dimana mahasiswa  melakukan intelectual exercise  untuk mempersiapkan masa depan yang akan diraih paca pendidikan. Dalam kontek pengembangan sikap kewirausahaan dikalangan mahasiswa,  Hong et al (2009) mengungkapkan bahwa pengalaman yang diperolah selama studi dan kualitas individu mahasiswa berpengaruh terhadap sikap kewirausahaan mahasiswa dan sikap kewirausahaan inilah yang pada akhirnya membentuk niat kewirausahaan. Hal ini dapat dikmanai bahwa mahasiswa yang memanfaatkan waktu studinya di kampus untuk mencari pengalaman baik pengalaman hidup secara umum maupun pengalaman kewirausahaan dan memacu diri untuk meningkatkan kualitas diri akan memiliki sikap kewirausahaan yang lebih baik dibanding mahasiswa yang “utun” (mahasiswa yang hanya mengejar prestasi akademis an sich).  Sikap kewirausahaan inilah  yang akan memunculkan keinginan kuat dalam diri mahasiswa untuk menjadi wirausaha dan melakukan self employment.

Pendapat tersebut juga di dukung oleh Davey et al  (2011)  yang mengungkapkan bahwa banyak perguruan tinggi yang berhasil melakukan pendidikan kewirausahaan bagi mahasiswa dengan meningkatkan ketrampilan berwirausaha dan juga kemampuan untuk mempersiapkan menjadi wirausaha. Menariknya, mereka juga menungkapkan fakta bahwa terdapat korelasi negatif antara tingkat pendatan nasional suatu negara (Gross National Product) dengan keinginan berwirausaha dikalangan mahasiswa. Argumen ini dapat dijelaskan bahwa mahasiswa yang berasal dari negara berkembang yang memiliki kondisi perekonomian relatif lebih rendah dengan negara maju, akan memiliki keyakinan dan sikap yang lebih siap untuk menghadapi ketidakpastian masa depan, misalanya dalam mencari lapangan pekerjaan.  Sehingga bagi mereka yang perfikir positif dan menjadi kampus  sebagai wadah mencari pengalaman dan peningkatan kualitas diri (Hong et al., 2009) akan memiliki persepsi bahwa menjadi wirausaha adalah pilahan yang terbaik bagi dirinya sekaligus positif bagi negaranya.  Menjadi wirausaha akan menjadikan dirinya yang mampu memperkerjakan dirinya sendiri (self emplyoment)  sekaligus menciptakan lapangan pekerjaan bagi orang lain (emplotyment creation).

Isu selanjutnya yang releven dalam mendiksukan peran perguruan tinggi dalam pengembangan kewirausahaan adalah bagaimana Perguruan tinggi mendesain program pengembangan kewirausahaanya. Liñán et al. (2011) dalam gambar 1 menggambarkan peran lembaga pendidikan dalam proses penciptaan kewirausaan. Pengembangan jiwa kewirausahaan di dalam perguruan tinggi  hendaknya mampu melibatkan lingkungan di luar kampus, antra lain dunia. Dunia usaha akan mampu mendorong pengembangan pengetahuan tertentu dengan sektor bisnis, mengembangkan jaringan bisnis maupun menjadi model rujuakan pengembangan bisnis. Disisi lain pengembangan kewirausahaan hendaknya mampu mengembangkan kreativitas dan ketrampilan untuk melihat peluang, sekaligus merangsang minat mahasiswa untuk memulai wirausaha. Salah satu materi penting yang perlu diajarkan dalam  pengembangan wirausaha adalah perencanaan bisnis yang mampu merubah peluang bisnis menjadi usaha riil dalam bentuk pendirian usaha baru. Model ini juga menekankan bahwa pengembangan wirausaha tidak hanya berhenti pada proses pendirian usaha tetapi juga meliputi bagaimana mendorong usaha yang terbentuk menjadi usaha yang dinamis.  

 Pengkaderan Wirausaha di HMI, Sebuah Pendekatan Sistemik

Setelah mendiskusikan peran perguruan tinggi dalam pengembangan jiwa kerwirausahaan di kalangan mahasiswa, pada bagian ini penulis mencoba untuk mensinergikan proses pengkaderan HMI dengan misi untuk mengembangan jiwa kewirausahaan dikalangan kader HMI. Sinergi tersebut dapat dilihat dari perspektif sistem yang melihat fenomena pengkaderan wirausaha dalam HMI sebagai sebuah proses yang melibatkan, input, proses, output dan impact dari fenomena tersebut. Dimana semua komponen tersebut sangat terkait satu sama lainnya.

Input dalam sistem pengkaderan wirausaha HMI terdiri dari peserta (trainee), pelatih (trainer), struktur dan dana.  Peserta yang mengkuti proses pengkaderan adalah anggota HMI, terutama anggota HMI yang masih memiliki masa studi yang panjang sehingga mereka masih memiliki kesempatan untuk memperoleh pengalaman dan meningkatkan kualitas diri. Komponen input selanjutnya adalah para pelatih dengan kualifikasi pengetahuan dan skill dalam kewirausahaan. Pelatih bisa diambil dengan latar belakang akademis, praktisi maupun kader HMI yang memiliki kualifikasi tersebut. Komponen input yang tidak kalah pentingnya adalah struktur kelembagagaan, jawaban terhadap pelaksana program pengkaderan harus sudah tuntas. Apakah lembaga harus otonom dari struktur HMI atau berada menjadi salah satu organ dalam HMI? dan yang lebih penting  dalam pelaksanaan program pengkaderan kewirausahaan adalah kejelasan visi, misi dan tujuan dari organisasi pelaksana. Terkait dengan komponen input ini adalah, dana pendukung program, baik untuk pembiayaan pelaksanaan program maupun investasi yang dibutuhkan untuk mendorong berdirinya usaha bisnisis sebagai tahap akhir program. Profesionalisme dan transparansi pengelolaan dana pengkaderan wirausaha HMI hendaknya menjadi isu penting yang perlu diperhatikan dalam pelaksanaan program ini karena isu diharapkan menjadi faktor pendorong sekaligius penghambat keberhasilan suatu program

  Disamping itu terdapat berbagai sumber pendanaan bagi wirausaha baru yang bergerak disetor UMKM menyaratkan praktek good governance dalam pengelolaan pendanaan proyek Proses merupakan komponen selanjutnya dalam sistem pengkaderan wirausaha HMI. Proses pengkaderan HMi bisa dilihat dari bagaimana pelatihan dilakukan (metode), materi yang disampikan (kurikulum) dan kedalaman training yang dilakukan (tingkat pelatihan). Karena kewirausahaan bukan hanya menuntut kedalaman pengetahuan tepi juga penguasaan ketrampilan terkait dengan kemampuan  mengambil peluang usaha dan menjalankan usaha maka metode yang relavan dalam pengkaderan HMI adalah metode yang melibatkan keterlibatan aktif peserta training, baik pada aspek afeksi, kognisi maupun psikomotoris. Dalam artian pelatihan yang dilakukan tidak hanya di lakukan di dalam kelas, tetapi juga di luar ruangan yang menghadapkan peserta dengan realitas di lapangan. Kurikulum pelatihan dapat diadopsi dari pelatihan-pelatihan kewirausahaan yang dilakukan lembaga perguruan tinggi maupun organisasi profesi lainnya. Untuk menyusun kurikulum pelatihan kewirausahaan perlu dilakukan workshop pengkaderan kewirausahaan HMI dengan melibatkan berbagai stakeholders. Sedangkan tingkatan pelatihan perlu dibedakan sesuai dengan output yang dituju karena tidak mungkin dalam satu tahap pelatihan peserta pelatihan langsung mampu menjadi wirausaha. Terkait dengan hal tersebut, pelatihan kewirausahaan perlu  di desain berjenjang berdasarkan kedalaman materi dan target yang ingin dicapai.  

Apabila ketersediaan input dan proses sistem pengkaderan wirausaha HMI berjalan dengan baik maka pengkaderan akan menghasilkan dua tingkat output,  yaitu wirausaha pada tingkat individu kader HMI dan unit bisnis strategis (strategic unit business) pada level organisasi. Individu-individu kader HMI diharapkan tidak hanya menjadi insan akademis tetapi juga mampu menjadi insan pencipta, dalam artian menciptakan lapangan pekerjaan baik bagi dirinya sendiri maupun orang lain. Sedangkan pada level organisasi, baik pada level terendah yaitu komisariat HMI maupun tingkatan tertinggi Pengurus Besar (PB) HMI akan terbentuk organisasi yang mampu menghasilkan keuntungan.

Terkait dengan output yang dihasilkan maka sistem pengkaderan wirauaha HMI akan memberikan dampak (impact) kemandirian HMI, baik pada tingkat individu yang ditandai dengan kemampuan membiayai kulish secara mandiri, maupun secara organisational berupa dukungan dana bagi  struktur organisasi HMI. Konsekwensinya ketergantungan finansial HMI terhadap alumni HMI akan dapat dikurangi bahkan di hilangkan. Lebih jauh lagi, pengkaderan wirausaha HMI akan mampu mengurangi tingkat pengangguran karena alumni pengkaderan wirausaha akan menghasilkan mahasiswa pemberi kerja (job provider) bukan mahasiswa pencari kerja (job seeker).  Secara jangka panjang, kehadiran mahasiswa dengan kemampuan tersebut akan mampu mengurangi tingkat kemiskinandi Indonesia dan pada akhirnya akan mencegah umat Islam untuk terlibat dari gerakan radikal.

 Peluang dan Tantangan

Pembahasan diatas merupakan sebuah konsep diatas kertas yang memerlukan refleksi dan gerak aksi dari pengambil kebijakan di dalam struktur HMI. Tetapi pada akhir tulisan ini penulis ingin menganalisis peluang dan tantangan pengkaderan wirausaha dalam HMI. Jumlah mahasiswa Indonesia yang sekitar 4,8 juta mahasiswa (,26/03/2011) merupakan sebuah kekuatan ekonomi potensial. Apabila 1% dari jumlah tersebut (sekitar 48.000 mahasiswa) berhasil menjadi wirausaha  dan mampu merekrut tenaga kerja paling tidak 5 orang (sebagai kriteria usaha mikro) maka akan terjadi penciptaan palangan pekerjaan bagi 240.000 penangguran. Dalam konteks HMI, tersedianya organisasi kekaryaan pada setiap level organisasi membuktikan bahwa visi kewirausahaan sesungguhnya telah terdapat di dalam tubuh HMI sehingga meningkatkan jiwa kewirausahaan HMI bukanlah hal yang berat. Revitalisasi kewirausahaan HMI seharunya menjadi kampanye kader HMI dalam berkontribusi terhadap kepentingan umat. Peluang terakhir adalah jaringan alumni HMI yang telah berhasil menjadi wirausaha tentunya akan menjadi kekuatan tersendiri bagi pengkaderan wirausaha HMI melaui dukungan dana, pengalaman, maupun pengetahuan.

Tetapi sebaliknya masih banyak tantangan yang perlu di hadapi dalam merealisasikan pengkaderan wirausaha HMI, antara lain mindset yang berkembang di kalangan kader bahwa keberhasilan kader atau alumni diukur dari keberhasilannya dalam mencapai jabatan struktur kekuasaan, baik pada level organisasi mahasiswa maupun organisasi politik di luar kampus. Tangantan selanjutnya adalah rendahnya profesionalisme di kalangan kader di dalam mengelola organisasi. Terbentuknya organisasi bisnis strategis disamping struktur HMI dapat mempengaruhi kinerja organisasi apabila tidak dikelola secara profesional. Keterbatasan waktu untuk beraktivitas di dalam HMI juga merupakan kendala tersendiri dalam pengembangan kewirausahaan. Disamping mengelola unit bisnis dan aktif di dalam organisasi HMI, kader HMI juga memiliki kewajiban utama sebagai mahasiwa sehingga keterbatasan waktu juga berotensi menjadi hambatan dalam pengembangan kewirausaha. Terlepas dari peluang dan hambatan yang ada dalam pengkaderan wirausaha HMI, namun pada akhirnya dapat ditarik benang merah bahwa mencetak kader wirausaha dalam HMI adalah sebuah tujuan yang “mungkin” terwujud.

  Daftar Pustaka

DAVEY, T., PLEWA, C. & STRUWIG, M. (2011) Entrepreneurship perceptions and career intentions of international students. Education and Training, 53.

HONG, G., YU, M., XUAN, B. & ZHENG, Z. (2009) A Study of the Impact of Enterprise Education on Entrepreneurial Intention of College Student. Soft Science, 9, 69-74.

HUSSAIN, M. A. (2006) Reasons behind Islamic Terrorism: Illiteracy, Poverty and Deprivation? <>

LIÑÁN, F., RODRÍGUEZ-COHARD, J. C. & RUEDA-CANTUCHE, J. M. (2011) Factors affecting entrepreneurial intention levels: a role for education. International  Entrepreneurship  Management  Journal, 7, 195-218.

 The Jakarta Pos, 11 Februari 2011,” Indonesia ranks 124th in 2011 Human Development Index” , 26 Maret 2011 , “Mahasiswa di Indonesia Cuma 4,8 Juta”



 Tentang Penulis


Penulis dilahirkan pada 20 Desember 1975 di Malang, Jawa Timur, adalah alumni Himpunan Mahasiswa Islam (HMI) yang memiliki pengalaman baik di organisasi intra maupun ekstra kampus. Ketua Badan Perwakilan Mahasiswa Fakultas Ilmu Administrasi Universitas Brawijaya adalah amanah terakhir yang diemban di organisai intra kampus sebelum memutuskan untuk berkonsentrasi pada pengkaderan HMI. Pengalaman pengkaderan dimulai dari ketua P3A HMI Koms. Ilmu Administrasi, Wasekum P3A Korkom Unibraw dan Biro Diklat Lembaga Pengelola

Latihan (LPL) HMI Cabang Malang. Amanah terakhir yang diemban penulis adalah Ketua HMI Komisariat Ilmu Administrasi Unibraw. Kecintaanya pada dinamika kampus mendorong penulis untuk berprofesi sebagai tenaga akademis di almamaternya. Penulis sekarang sedang menempuh studi program doktor (PhD) di Sydney Business School, University of Wollongong, Australia dengan kekhususan pada kajian manajemen stratejik dan kewirausahaan.   




[1] Alumni HMI Komisariat Ilmu Administrasi Universitas Brawijaya

Revitalisasi Pemberdayaan Usaha Mikro Kecil dan Menengah dan Masa Depan Ekonomi

December 14, 2011 in Articles

Salah satu isu penting yang manjadi pembahasan dalam  the 56th International Consortium for Small Business (ICSB), 15-18 Juni di Stockholm, Swedia beberapa waktu yang lalu adalah signifikansi peran pemerintah dalam peningkatan jiwa kewirausahaan dan daya saing usaha kecil.  Konferensi tersebut juga mengangkat tema besar  Back to The Future, yang didasari atas kesadaran bahwa masa depan perekonomian suatu negara akan sangat dipengaruhi oleh peningkatan orientasi kewirausahaan dan daya saing usaha kecil di negara tersebut.  Dalam konteks Indonesia, isu pemberdayaan usaha skala kecil, yang dalam Undang-Undang Nomor 20 tahun 2005 di sebut sebagai Usaha Mikro, Kecil, dan Menengah  (UMKM) menjadi relevan karena:  pertama, struktur pelaku ekonomi di Indonesia yang mayoritas dilakukan oleh usaha skala mikro, kecil dan menengah, kedua mayoritas tenaga kerja Indonesia berada pada sektor industri skala  mikro, kecil dan menengah, dan ketiga trend perkembangan menunjukkan bahwa UMKM memiliki potensi ekspor nonmigas yang besar.

 Apabila kita amati,  stuktur pelaku ekonomi Indonesia menunjukkan bentuk piramida, dimana  puncak piramida diisi pelaku usaha skala besar sedangkan di dasar piramida  didominasi oleh skala mikro, kecil dan menengah yang beroperasi  dalam iklim yang kompetitif, hambatan masuk (entry barrier) yang rendah, margin keuntungan yang rendah, dan tingkat kegagalan (droup out) yang tinggi. Pada tahun 2009, Kementrian Koperasi dan UMKM mencatat terdapat sekitar 52.764.603 unit usaha dalam skala mikro, kecil dan menengah dan hanya 1% (4.677 unit)  pelaku usaha berskala besar. Data tersebut juga menunjukkan adanya peningkatan daya serap UMKM terhadap pekerja di Indonesia, dari 83,586,616 tenaga kerja di tahun 2005  meningkat menjadi 96.211.332 orang tenaga kerja  pada tahun 2009. Dapat disimpulkan bahwa lebih dari 97% orang Indonesia bergantung terhadap keberadaan UMKM. Entitas bisnis ini mampu menjadi wahana aktualisasi diri wirausaha dalam mengurangi tingkat pengangguran di kantong-kantong kemiskinan. 

 Menipisnya kandungan minyak dan gas bumi serta berbagai permasalahan terkait dengan bahan bakar minyak (BBM) nampaknya menyadarkan kita bahwa minyak dan gas bumi bukan lagi menjadi primadona komoditas ekspor bagi Indonesia. Konsekwensi logis dari situasi ini, pemerintah dan sektor swasta hendaknya bekerjasama untuk menggali potensi komoditas lain yang diminati pasar ekspor.  Produk furniture, alas kaki, logam dan handycraft, yang banyak dihasilkan sentra UMKM di Indonesia  nampaknya berpotensi untuk merambah pasar ekspor.   Data Kementrian Koperasi dan UMKM menunjukkan bahwa UMKM berkontribusi sebesar Rp. 110,338 milyar pada tahun 2005 dan cenderung meningkat menjadi  Rp. 183, 759 milyar tahun 2008. Data ini menunjukkan bahwa kemampuan UMKM untuk mengekspor komoditas yang dihasilkan  cenderung meningkat.

 Moratorium pengiriman tenaga kerja Indonesia (TKI) ke beberapa negara dapat dilihat sebagai itikad baik pemerintah dalam melindungi warganya dan menjunjung harga diri bangsa, tetapi tidak bisa dipungkiri bahwa kebijakan tersebut berdampak negatif terhadap pengurangan tingkat pengangguran.  Kondisi ini menjadi momen bagi pemerintah, baik ditingkat pusat maupun daerah untuk merevitalisasi peran UMKM sebagai mesin perekonomian khususnya sebagai pencipta lapangan kerja. Daerah-daerah yang selama ini menjadi kantong pengiriman TKI dan menikmati remitten para TKI, hendaknya menjadi pioner pemberdayaan UMKM.   Inisiasi pemberdayaa UMKM bisa diawali dengan memposisikan Undang-Undang No. 20 tahun 2008 tentang pemberdayaan UMKM sebagai payung hukum pemberdayaan UMKM dan melakukan penajaman visi ekonomi kerakyatan kepala daerah dan wakil rakyat dalam menciptakan APBD pro rakyat. Salah satu instrumen kebijakan yang menjadi kewengan pemerintah daerah  dalam pemberdayaan UMKM adalah penyusunan Peraturan Daerah (PERDA) tentang pemberdayaan UMKM. Perda ini akan mampu memberikan solusi dan memenuhi kebutuhan (meets the needs)  UMKM. Namun untuk dapat mencapai tujuan tersebut,  paling tidak terdapat tiga kriteria yang harus dipenuhi dalam PERDA UMKM yaitu; pertama  seluruh pemangku kepentingan harus dilibatkan  dalam penyusunan dan implementasi kebijakan,  kedua  pemberdayaan UMKM harus dilaksanakan lintas sektoral dan kewilayahan, dan ketiga  pemberdayaan harus memenuhi prinsip-prinisip manajerial.

 Pelibatan stakeholders, yang terdiri dari pemerintah(eksekutif dan legislatif), sektor swasta, dan masyarakat (termasuk perguruan tinggi, lembaga swadaya masyarakat maupun pelaku UMKM) dalam penyusunan dan implementasi kebijakan pemberdayaan UMKM akan mewujudkan kebijakan yang berkesinambungan dan komprehensif. Peran eksekutif dengan kewenangan untuk mengalokasikan sumberdaya diiringi mekanisme kontrol yang efektif dari legislatif akan mampu mewujudkan program pemberdayaan UMKM yang tepat sasaran. Peran aktif sektor swasta maupun BUMN/D  dalam menjalankan program social business  dalam bentuk tanggung jawab sosial perusahaan maupun penyisihan laba usaha di lengkapi dengan peran pendampingan dari perguruan tinggi maupun LSM akan berkontribusi pada kemandirian UMKM sebagai pelaku usaha.

 Selanjutnya, program pemberdayaan UMKM hendaknya mampu menghilangkan sekat-sekat sektoral dan batas kewilayahan. Seperti di indikasikan pada studi yang dilakukan Marijan (2006) bahwa UMKM di Indonesia cenderung berkembang  dan teraglomerasi secara alamiah melampau batas administratif kewilayahan. Kondisi ini kadangkala menjadi hambatan dalam implementasi pemberdayaan UMKM. Namun fenomena tersebut perlu direspon secara positif dalam kacamata otonomi daerah. Desentralisasi kebijakan pemberdayaan UMKM mendorong terciptanya peluang bagi pemerintah daerah (khususnya pemerintah provinsi) untuk berinovasi dalam memberdayakan UMKM. Salah satu contoh inovasi kebijakan dalam pemberdayaan UMKM adalah strategi kluster industri. Strategi yang telah teruji  keberhasilannya di negara maju maupun negara berkembang ini  dipercaya mampu menghilangkan sekat-sekat sektoral dan geografis dalam pengembangan UMKM karena pemberdayaan UMKM akan dilihat dalam kacamata analisis rantai nilai (value chain analysis)  yang melihat permasalahan industri dari hilir ke hulu. Strategi kluster juga diyakini mampu merangsang adanya efisiensi bersama dan memelihara kearifan lokal berupa modal sosial yang pada akhirnya mampu memberi manfaat yang besar bagi UMKM dalam kluster industri. 

 Kriteria ketiga yang juga perlu diperhatikan dalam penyusunan dan implementasi PERDA UMKM adalah implementasi prinsip-prinsip manajemen. Penerapan prinsip ini akan menjamin PERDA UMKM tidak menjadi perda yang “ompong” karena PERDA UMKM merupakan kehendak politik dan konsensus antar pihak eksekutif dan legislatif yang akan dilaksanakan secara konsekuen. Kehendak dan konsensus politik pemerintah termanifestasi dalam proses perencenaan, implementasi dan pengawasan kebijakan ini. Apabila perencananaan dan implementasi kebijakan telah disinggung dalam kriteria pertama dan kedua, maka kata kunci dalam prinsip manajerial PERDA UMKM adalah pengawasan. Pihak legislatif harus memainkan peran pengawasan dan evaluasi terhadap implementasi program oleh eksekutif karena tanpa adanya peran tersebut, keberhasilan program hanya didasarkan pada kemampuan eksekutif dalam mengalokasikan sumberdaya (baca penyerapan anggaran) bukan pada tingkat keluaran (output) atapun pada tingkat dampak (outcome). Sehingga program pemberdayaan UMKM akan mampu menyentuh akar permasalahan dan memberikan dampak solutif terhadap permasalahanekonomi lokal.   

 Diskusi singkat tersebut diatas, kiranya menggugah kesadaran bahwa revitalisi pemberdayaan UMKM menjadi sebuah keharusan apabila seluruh pemangku kepentingan memiliki kesadaran UMKM adalah satu pilar pemnyelesaian permasalahan bangsa ini.  Meskipun isu peningkatan orientasi kewirausahaan dan daya saing UMKM merupakan isu klasik yang seakan ditelan masa , tetapi telah diyakini bahwa keiwrusahaan dan UMKM merupakan penentu masa depan perekonomian Indonesia (back to the futre). Semoga fikiran progresive untuk lebih meletakkan posisisi UMKM pada tempat yang layak ditengah persaingan ekonomi global senilai dengan pemikiran radikal ekonom Inggris , E. F. Schumacher dalam bukunya “ small is beautiful”.